Ezekiel 32:3
Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will therefore spread out my net over thee with a company of many people; and they shall bring thee up in my net.
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(3) Spread out my net over thee.—The figure (Ezekiel 32:4-6) of drawing the crocodile to land and casting him upon the desert for food to the birds and beasts of prey is the same as in Ezekiel 29:4-5. (Comp. also Ezekiel 31:12-13.) In Ezekiel 32:6, “the land wherein thou swimmest” is, literally, the land of thine outflow, and may be taken either of the land on which his blood is poured out, or, more probably, the land of the inundations of the Nile, now to be watered with blood.

Ezekiel 32:3-6. I will spread out my net over thee, &c. — I will bring thine enemies upon thee, who shall encompass thee on every side, and master thee as a wild beast or monstrous fish is taken in a net. Then will I leave thee upon the land — That is, leave thee to certain destruction, or take away from thee all means of recovery. For Pharaoh being here spoken of as a water animal, leaving him upon the land, signified leaving him to certain death, without the means of escaping it; for a fish left upon the land must needs die, let it struggle as it will, water being absolutely necessary to its life. This was literally fulfilled when, making war upon the Cyrenians, he was vanquished, and his army cut in pieces, and left a prey to the fowls and beasts in the deserts of Libya and Cyrene: see note on Ezekiel 29:4-5. And I will fill the beasts of the whole earth with thee — With the flesh of thy vast armies. Or rather, understanding the words figuratively, I will enrich all nations with thy spoils. And I will lay thy flesh upon the mountains, &c. — Thy people shall be slain, both upon the mountains and in the valleys, and their carcasses lie unburied there. I will also water with thy blood the land wherein thou swimmest — The land of Egypt, wherein thou bearest rule; even to the mountains — The mountains shall be wet with it, as well as the lower grounds: compare Isaiah 34:3. And the rivers shall be full of thee — All places, both high and low, both land and water. All the expressions in these verses are hyperbolical, signifying the vast slaughter that should be made of the Egyptians, and the immense booty that should be obtained by their enemies.

32:1-16 It becomes us to weep and tremble for those who will not weep and tremble for themselves. Great oppressors are, in God's account, no better than beasts of prey. Those who admire the pomp of this world, will wonder at the ruin of that pomp; which to those who know the vanity of all things here below, is no surprise. When others are ruined by sin, we have to fear, knowing ourselves guilty. The instruments of the desolation are formidable. And the instances of the desolation are frightful. The waters of Egypt shall run like oil, which signifies there should be universal sadness and heaviness upon the whole nation. God can soon empty those of this world's goods who have the greatest fulness of them. By enlarging the matters of our joy, we increase the occasions of our sorrow. How weak and helpless, as to God, are the most powerful of mankind! The destruction of Egypt was a type of the destruction of the enemies of Christ.Thou art like ... - Rather, Thou wouldest be like to (others, "wast likened unto") a young lion.

And thou art - In contrast to what thou wouldest be.

A whale - Rather, crocodile (marginal reference note). Pharaoh should have been like the king of beasts, but he is a mere sea-monster. There is strong irony here, because the Egyptian king was proud of the comparison between himself and the mighty crocodile.

Seas - The word is often used of the waters of a great river, like the Nile.

Thou camest forth with thy rivers - Rather, thou didst burst forth in "thy rivers" as the crocodile does from the water into which he has plunged.

3. with a company of many people—namely, the Chaldeans (Eze 29:3, 4; Ho 7:12).

my net—for they are My instrument.

My net; a large, long, and wide net, drawn out to full extent.

Over thee; with which both lions and crocodiles might be taken, and in which this lion and crocodile should certainly be taken; for God, whose hand never erreth, will spread the net.

With a company of many people: in the countries where these creatures were hunted, they went in mighty companies to the game, as they accounted it.

Bring thee up in my net; drag thee along to destroy thee, pull thee up out of the pit, in which the net was laid to take the lion to kill him, and draw this crocodile up out of the water for the same end; in brief, war by land and sea by a confederacy of many people against Hophra shall be God’s net, wherein he shall be taken, kept a prisoner, as he was, and at last strangled: see Ezekiel 29:4.

Thus saith the Lord God,.... The Lord God Almighty, who is able to manage this fierce and turbulent creature, this mighty monarch and disturber of the nations:

I will therefore spread out my net over thee with a company of many people; meaning the Chaldean army, which the Lord would instigate, and by his providence bring against the king of Egypt, and surround him as fishes in a net, and take him and his people; see Ezekiel 12:13,

and they shall bring thee up in my net; out of his rivers, out of his fortresses, out of his own land, and carry him captive, or destroy him.

Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will therefore spread out my net over thee with a company of many people; and they shall bring thee up in my net.
3. Jehovah shall drag him out with his net by means of many peoples (Ezekiel 32:11-12). On figure, cf. Ezekiel 12:13, Ezekiel 17:20; Hosea 7:12. For people read peoples.

Verse 3. - I will spread out my net. The imagery of Ezekiel 29:3 is repeated, with a variation as to the mode of capture. There is no evidence that the crocodile was ever taken with a net; but Ezekiel may have chosen the comparison for that very reason. What was impossible in the parable, according to its letter, was possible when it received its application. Ezekiel 32:3The destruction of Pharoah. - Ezekiel 32:2. Son of man, raise a lamentation over Pharaoh the king of Egypt, and say to him, Thou wast compared to a young lion among the nations, and yet wast like a dragon in the sea; thou didst break forth in thy streams, and didst trouble the waters with thy feet, and didst tread their streams. Ezekiel 32:3. Thus saith the Lord Jehovah, Therefore will I spread out my net over thee in the midst of many nations, that they may draw thee up in my yarn; Ezekiel 32:4. And will cast thee upon the land, hurl thee upon the surface of the field, and will cause all the birds of the heaven to settle upon thee, and the beasts of the whole earth to satisfy themselves with thee. Ezekiel 32:5. Thy flesh will I put upon the mountains, and fill the valleys with thy funeral heap. Ezekiel 32:6. I will saturate the earth with thine outflow of thy blood even to the mountains, and the low places shall become full of thee. - This lamentation begins, like others, with a picture of the glory of the fallen king. Hitzig objects to the ordinary explanation of the words כּפיר גּוים נדמיתה, λέοντι ἐθνῶν ὡμοιώθης (lxx), leoni gentium assimilatus es (Vulg.), on the ground that the frequently recurring נדמה would only have this meaning in the present passage, and that נמשׁל, which would then be synonymous, is construed in three other ways, but not with the nominative. For these reasons he adopts the rendering, "lion of the nations, thou belongest to death." But it would be contrary to the analogy of all the קינות to commence the lamentation with such a threat; and Hitzig's objections to the ordinary rendering of the words will not bear examination. The circumstance that the Niphal נדמה is only met with here in the sense of ὁμοιοῦσθαι, proves nothing; for דּמה has this meaning in the Kal, Piel, and Hithpael, and the construction of the Niphal with the accusative (not nominative, as Hitzig says) may be derived without difficulty from the construction of the synonymous נמשׁל with כ. But what is decisive in favour of this rendering is the fact that the following clause is connected by means of the adversative ואתּה (but thou), which shows that the comparison of Pharaoh to a תּנּים forms an antithesis to the clause in which he is compared to a young lion. If נדמית 'כּפיר ג contained a declaration of destruction, not only would this antithesis be lost, but the words addressed to it as a lion of the nations would float in the air and be used without any intelligible meaning. The lion is a figurative representation of a powerful and victorious ruler; and כּפיר גּוים is really equivalent to אל גּוים in Ezekiel 31:11.

Pharaoh was regarded as a mighty conqueror of the nations, "though he was rather to be compared to the crocodile, which stirs up the streams, the fresh waters, and life-giving springs of the nations most perniciously with mouth and feet, and renders turbid all that is pure" (Ewald). תּנּים, as in Ezekiel 29:3. Ewald and Hitzig have taken offence at the words תּגח בּנהרתיך, "thou didst break forth in thy streams," and alter בּנהרתיך retla d into בּנחרתיך, with thy nostrils (Job 41:12); but they have not considered that תּגח would be quite out of place with such an alteration, as גּיח in both the Kal and Hiphil (Judges 20:33) has only the intransitive meaning to break out. The thought is simply this: the crocodile lies in the sea, then breaks occasionally forth in its streams, and makes the waters and their streams turbid with its feet. Therefore shall Pharaoh also end like such a monster (Ezekiel 32:3-6). The guilt of Pharaoh did not consist in the fact that he had assumed the position of a ruler among the nations (Kliefoth); but in his polluting the water-streams, stirring up and disturbing the life-giving streams of the nations. God will take him in His net by a gathering of nations, and cause him to be drawn out of his element upon the dry land, where he shall become food to the birds and beasts of prey (cf. Ezekiel 29:4-5; Ezekiel 31:12-13). The words 'בּקהל עמּים ר are not to be understood as referring to the nations, as spectators of the event (Hvernick); but ב denotes the instrument, or medium employed, here the persons by whom God causes the net to be thrown, as is evident from the והעלוּך which follows. According to the parallelismus membrorum, the ἁπ. λεγ. רמוּת can only refer to the carcase of the beast, although the source from which this meaning of the word is derived has not yet been traced. There is no worth to be attached to the reading rimowt in some of the codices, as רמּה does not yield a suitable meaning either in the sense of reptile, or in that of putrefaction or decomposed bodies, which has been attributed to it from the Arabic. Under these circumstances we adhere to the derivation from רוּם, to be high, according to which רמוּת may signify a height or a heap, which the context defines as a funeral-pile. צפה, strictly speaking, a participle from צוּף, to flow, that which flows out, the outflow (Hitzig), is not to be taken in connection with ארץ, but is a second object to השׁקיתי; and the appended word מדּמך indicates the source whence the flowing takes place, and of what the outflow consists. אל ההרים, to the mountains, i.e., up to the top of the mountains. The thought in these verses is probably simply this, that the fall of Pharaoh would bring destruction upon the whole of the land of Egypt, and that many nations would derive advantage from his fall.

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